The Premier League returned with a bang to bring us all out of our pre-season depressions. Here are five things we at FootyBlog learnt from the opening weekend.
- Jurgen Klopp needs a strap for his glasses.
The charismatic German took his new look Liverpool side to the Emirates Stadium on the opening weekend, as The Reds eventually prevailed in an absolute thriller.
We all know that Jurgen Klopp is quite a passionate chap, and does not shy away from celebrating his team’s goals. This weekend was no exception, he twice lost his glasses during frenzied celebrations.
After the calamitous scenes at Norwich last season in which Klopp condemned a perfectly good pair of spectacles to the trash heap, the German manager was lucky not to lose another pair. While a strap might admittedly not add copious amounts of style to Klopp’s already casual pitch side look, it would be a practical option.
2. Nobody told Arsenal when The Premier League was starting.
There was an air of anxiety around the Emirates stadium this weekend. Arsenal, having made only two signings all summer, were also devoid of a first choice centre back in their squad.
To add to that, Wenger had handed extended rest periods to European stars like Mesut Ozil, Laurent Koscielny and Olivier Giroud. The first half was encouraging, but what followed in the second half justified the boos that rung out at the end of the game.
While The Gunners fought back to within a goal before the end, their early second half meltdown showed that Wenger’s side were severely undercooked.
Wenger admitted after the game that his side were not ready, only furthering the anger amongst the fans. Perhaps Arsene got his calendar wrong and pitched up at the Emirates expecting a pre-season friendly. Time to upgrade to an online calendar Mr. Wenger.
3. The Man-of-the-Match trophy is a shocker.
After what could be considered the perfect Premier League debut for Zlatan Ibrahimovic, he was handed the new Premier League Man-of-the-Match trophy in a post-match interview. The global superstar’s face said it all. After being presented with what can only be described as a bottle of aftershave, the Swede was hardly impressed.
The trophy is barely bathroom cabinet material let alone something to be proudly displayed on a mantlepiece. The problem for Zlatan is that he could have gathered quite a collection of the little trophies before the season has ended.
4. No one will take most hated tag off Diego Costa this season.
West Ham fans will be feeling hard done by after watching their side fall to a late Diego Costa goal at Stamford Bridge. The late goal in itself will have hurt, but the fact that Diego Costa was even on the field to score it will add further salt to the wounds.
Having already been booked, Costa slid in on Hammers goalkeeper Adrian, taking all of the man and none of the ball. In fact, Costa was nowhere near the ball, his studs were showing and his contact was high.
It was an appalling challenge and surely more than enough for a second yellow. Not according to referee Anthony Taylor. Costa then went on to drill home the winner from twenty yards and new manager Antonio Conte promptly threw himself into the crowd to celebrate.
Costa will know, however, that he was lucky to finish the game.
5. Hull City are going to win the league.
Premier League new boys Hull City had the unenviable task of welcoming champions Leicester City to the KCOM Stadium on the opening weekend.
A club in crisis, caretaker manager Mike Phelan had only 13 fit first team players to call on. Inside the stadium, the mood was fractious as fans protested against the current owner and uncertainty reigned amongst reports of a possible Chinese takeover of the club.
Despite all the upheaval, The Tigers roared on the field, putting last season’s unlikely champions to the sword and taking all three points away from the tie. At just 1500/1 for Premier League glory amongst some of the bookies, Hull City are well on their way to a league title.
In all honesty, though, anything other than relegation will probably do.